Sunday, January 30, 2011

Better Than Lofthouse!

Sugar Cookies or Tea Cakes For Christmas or

Valentine's Day

Tea Cakes are better known as soft sugar cookies or shortbread to Americans.
Lofthouse is one store brand.

This old recipe has been passed down from mother to daughter for a very long time. Its origin is English-Scottish. Just in the last 150 years it was passed from my great-grandmother, Claudia Paxton-Parker to Edith Thelma Parker-Vinson to Betty June Brown to me and my sisters to our daughters. So I'd say these wonderful cake/cookies are quite the family tradition. I double the recipe for sharing and make them at Christmas time and often Valentine's Day too. Trees for Christmas, hearts for Valentine's. It's a big deal that I'm sharing this super wonderful family recipe with you,
so properly appreciate it. :)

Tea Cakes

  • 2 eggs
  • 2 c. sugar
  • 1 c. butter (the real stuff)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. almond extract (I added this to the recipe)
  • 1/2 c. buttermilk
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • approximately 5 c. flour
Cream together the eggs, sugar, butter and extracts until fluffy. Add buttermilk and mix. Mix together dry ingredients and add enough flour to have a workable dough. You'll be adding more when you roll out the dough, so be careful. Too much flour affects the taste. Chill the dough for an hour or more for best results, then roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface. Also, flour the top of the dough a little to prevent the rolling pin from sticking. Cut out using your favorite cookie cutters and place on an ungreased cookie sheet. At this point you may choose to brush the tops of the cookies with egg whites and sprinkle with colored sugar before baking if you don't intend on icing them after baking. Otherwise bake at 325 until just done. If you want them soft there's no need to brown them at all, just cook until set. My mom likes them brown and crispy, but that's not how to get the "Lofthouse" type softie cookie, that brown one is a coffee dunker!

We ice these wonderful cookies after they cool with a true butterceam type icing. No Crisco please!

My Buttercream Icing
  • 1/2 c. softened butter
  • 2 c. powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • desired flood coloring
  • 2-4 tsp. milk, or more
Beat together the butter, sugar, coloring, and vanilla. It will be dry. Add the milk a little at a time beating until creamy and spreadable. Spread on the cookies and sprinkle with sprinkles or colored sugar, if desired, while the icing is still wet. This is a good kid job, getting the cookies sprinkled before the icing firms up. ENJOY!


Sharon Carter said...

Sounds and looks delicious! Quick question: is the flour plain or self-rising?

 Cha said...

Sharon, It is regular flour. The buttermilk and baking soda provide all the rising power. Hope you enjoy!